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SAIC Stretches Database Limits

SAN DIEGO -- Storage Networking World -- Killer asteroids, complex data searches for the intelligence community, and cancer research are laying the foundations for the next generation of massive databases, according to Cora Carmody, CIO of defense contractor SAIC.

During her keynote today, Carmody outlined a number of SAIC projects that are stretching database technology to its limits, such as the Panoramic Survey Telescope and Rapid Response System (PAN-STARR) initiative. "Working with the University of Hawaii, we're building the largest database of astronomical data," she said.

The project, which involves searching for "killer" asteroids and researching the origins of the solar system, began in 2002, and will eventually generate about 10 Tbytes of data a week. "It will, at the end of its life, create an astronomy database of 40 Pbytes," said Carmody.

The long-term goal of PAN-STARR is to make the database available over the Internet so that it can be used for education and research.

By way of context, the entire printed collections of the Library of Congress are said to equal 10 Tbytes of data, highlighting the sheer scale of this effort.

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